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  #11  
Old 02-20-2011
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Anyone have some experience with a bimini or an enclosure when the mainsheet and traveler are located in the cockpit right in front of the helm?
Thanks!
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  #12  
Old 02-20-2011
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It sounds like you are planning to use this enclosure when sailing. If so you need to take into account the windloads in squalls. You can not rely on a few poppers and a couple of ties to keep the thing attached to the cockpit edges and bimini.

Heavy duty Zips and lots of lacings will work but it makes set up and tear down a longer process. I like the idea of the bolt rope and slot but have never tried it. Believe me you do not want to get into a situation where you have a 40 knot squall ripping your enclosure loose.

N.B. You do not say where you sail but if it is a hot climate then white with few windows will keep the temps down and make sure you can get some through draft esp. when at anchor. Our boat has a dodger plus extended roof over the cockpis with no sides but it still gets too hot in summer in the Caribbean unless we open up the front of the dodger.
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  #13  
Old 02-20-2011
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out of curiosity what is a camper top worth from scratch ? I am very interested in at minimum a dodger but the enclosed cockpit with bimini looks very nice for cockpit entertaining.
thanks
Bill
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Old 02-20-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LASWACK View Post
Anyone have some experience with a bimini or an enclosure when the mainsheet and traveler are located in the cockpit right in front of the helm?
Thanks!
Yep.



Our mainsheet tackle is on the binnacle.




There is a filler panel which ties the dodger and bimini together, with a small hole for the mainsheet to feed through. Stunningly, no water enters when it rains.



The only downside is that to sail, the filler has to be removed so that the mainsheet has room to sweep. However, at anchor, or while motoring it provides great weather protection.
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Old 02-20-2011
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It sounds like you are planning to use this enclosure when sailing. If so you need to take into account the windloads in squalls. You can not rely on a few poppers and a couple of ties to keep the thing attached to the cockpit edges and bimini.

Am thinking of a similar setup but would need to be able to take it down in heavy weather. Heavy duty zips or velcro seems the way to go.
If I get caught out then the last thing I,d want is a cockpit enclosure that starts flapping around or worse still starts to add to the tiller load. Would be great to be dry and warm on cold wet days but in high winds and heavy seas I,d prefer to have any additional windage stowed below before it gets difficult.
Reckon I could live with a semi permanent stainless frame with a canvas cover and velcroed clear plastic windows. Maybe even a couple of velcro panels for access going forward.
Now if only I knew someone who has a heavy duty sewing machine.
Safe sailing.
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  #16  
Old 03-08-2011
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Post Must be nice.....

I plan to buy a used 30 footer if Fla this year. Due to limited sun and heat tolerance I need a Bimini if the boat has none and I want to experiment with solar screen shields to cut sun by half in the cockpit and also forward. I have seen boats with solar screen shields draped across decks loosely. Used Biminis are a ubiquitous item on Craig's List.

By the way, the photos of cockpit enclosures in this thread are nice, but each one likely costs more than the entire purchase price for the boat I can afford.

For cold protection I will dress warm, isinglass is very expensive, has high windage and has a short useful life.

For side sun protection while maintaining ventilation I plan to try using the solar screen shields popular with RVers and farmers. A company called FarmTek.com is a huge supplier to farmers with low prices, the opposite of premium marine pricing structure. The have a huge selection of awning and sun screen fabrics, some are loosely woven reflective mylar. They do custom cut orders of any size with sewn and grommeted finished edging for very reasonable prices. Since the approach with sun screen means the panels do not have to be very strong for wind gusts or rain retention, these panels could be easily improvised from bulk fabric as well. Some of the screening is available with varying degrees of reflectivity, from 10 to 90%.

I would like to hear from others who have used solar screens for protection from low angle sun. I imagine a screen that covers one side of the cockpit would be enough, it could be moved depending on which side is getting the glare.
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Old 03-08-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by copacabana View Post
rdw, you don't mention where you are, but if you're in a tropical climate, be aware that a lot of clear panels can heat up the cockpit pretty quickly. What you want is protection from the sun............. If you're in a colder climate, disregard the above ....
We're pretty much on the "copacabana plan". We used to have a full enclosure, but we found it too cumbersome. We like and need the splash guards that we've made that can also be air scoops if the forward end is clipped to the lifelines. They are shown in this photo with the circle windows:




We'll hang a shade across the aft end when needed for sun or rain. Of course, the front shade comes off the plastic when underway. You may also note that the stainless tubes close to the clear plastic are covered with cloth sleeves. This keep them from heating and burning the clear plastic in the lower latitudes. Take care and joy, Aythya crew

Last edited by CaptainForce; 03-08-2011 at 02:58 PM.
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Old 03-08-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PopeyeGordon View Post
I would like to hear from others who have used solar screens for protection from low angle sun. I imagine a screen that covers one side of the cockpit would be enough, it could be moved depending on which side is getting the glare.
I had some shades made from the same woven vinyl stuff as in the picture that zip onto my bimini, hang down, and are fastened to whatever with shock cords. Sorry no pictures of the shades but they work fairly well and come in 3 densities to vary the amount of light/heat but still let some air into the area shaded.




The ones in the picture came with the boat and also hold windshield type reflectors when total privacy and sun blockage is desired. A local sailmaker did my bimini and shades.
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Old 03-08-2011
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Originally Posted by christyleigh View Post


Just as an aside, Stan, it looks like you came to a sudden stop and everything in the damn boat ended up in the v-berth!
)
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  #20  
Old 03-08-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PopeyeGordon View Post
...
By the way, the photos of cockpit enclosures in this thread are nice, but each one likely costs more than the entire purchase price for the boat I can afford.

...For cold protection I will dress warm, isinglass is very expensive, has high windage and has a short useful life...

For side sun protection while maintaining ventilation I plan to try using the solar screen shields popular with RVers and farmers. A company called FarmTek.com is a huge supplier to farmers with low prices, the opposite of premium marine pricing structure.
I just did some research- for 70% shading, you can buy agricultural mesh, available in any colour you want as long as it is black, for about $5/ lin yd. To shade an approx. 7' x7' cockpit on a 30ft' boat you might be looking at $40 in material.

SunBlocker Premium PolyMax Bulk Polyethylene Knitted Shade - 70% - FarmTek

Now, if you went with that really expensive marine material, your cost is $12.50/ lin yards. So, call it $85 in material, available in an assortment of colours.

Phifertex Vinyl Mesh Black X04 54" Fabric - Sold by the Yard

I'm not seeing a huge savings, in the overall scheme of things. In fact, if the phifertex lasts twice as long in a salt intensive marine environment, as I suspect it would, there is no cost savings at all in making your boat look like a failed ginseng farm.

As far as isinglass being very expensive and having a short useful life, the experience of most of us here will likely put that misconception to rest. My dodger is now 7 years old, with the original windows... and if I have to replace it, 20 gauge costs a whopping $5 / lin yard.
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